College Q&A: Can I Date His Suite-Mate?

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Question
Last year I wasn’t really looking for a boyfriend, so I was hooking up with this REALLY hot guy, John from the Co-Ed sports team I play on. It was only ever good times for both of us, and it happened maybe four times over, like, eight months, and we never even had sex. Since then, John’s gotten a girlfriend and we’re still really good friends who communicate really well. No problems there.

The real problem? John lives in a suite with seven other guys, pretty much all of whom are equally hot. One of them, Jack, is more gorgeous than the rest, but outside of that, he’s sweet and intelligent and funny and really, really dedicated to making the world a better place, which is really important to me. He’s pretty reserved, so he only started opening up to me at the end of the semester, but now we’re really close and we talk all the time and he seeks me out at parties to spend time with me, which is huge because he’s really shy. I am unbelievably into this guy, but is it completely unethical to date a guy when you’ve already hooked up with his suitemate? Do I even have a chance, since I’m pretty sure Jack knows about it? And finally, should I try to clear the air about it with Jack? What are the rules regarding guys and suitemates? Please help!

GPA Girl
Toughie! I feel I could answer this question better if I were a guy, but alas, I’ll just have to give you my take, which is that I don’t think the “never, EVER date your best friend’s ex” unwritten rule applies to guys as rigidly as it does to girls. Has John ever shown any signs of disapproval that you’re spending so much time with Jack? You didn’t mention it, so I assume he hasn’t. Plus, you and John never technically dated, and he has an actual girlfriend now. I don’t see the problem. Sure, things could be awk if he walks in on you and Jack making out in his suite, but you sound like a pretty intelligent lady, and I don’t think you’d let that happen.

Here’s what I recommend: Don’t even mention your past with John to Jack. If he does know, fine; if he doesn’t, fine. DO mention that you’d like to go out with him and get to know him better. See what he says. Shy guys are often insecure and ignore really obvious signs that girls like them. Tell it to him straight, and see what happens. John shouldn’t have any reason to get mad, and I think he should actually be glad that his friend is on the path to landing such an awesome chick. Good luck!

Busy Bee
I guess it’s not “unethical,” but it falls under the “sticky subject” category. Since you and John never went further than kissing, I’d say it’s okay to get serious with Jack. Unless John had serious feelings for you (which it sounds like he saw you as more FWB), he won’t take your new relationship too hard. Go ahead and clear things up with Jack first. Tell him that you used to have a crush on John, that nothing really happened, and that you are all focused on him (Jack) now. I don’t know the rules regarding suite-mates, but I just know that because there was no real relationship involved with John, that the coast is clear. There are usually rules regarding best friends, but suite-mates…not so much. Plus, it sounds like these two guys are not the closest of friends. If Jack is acting like he likes you, then a kiss in the past stays in the past. He’ll be all for this relationship if you are! Good luck! Oh, and can you PLEASE give my number to these group of hot bachelors?!!

Party Girl
I don’t really see an issue here…you didn’t have sex with homeboy, right? So what’s the deal with hooking up with his (much hotter) roommate? If you limited yourself in college to people who had no association with each other, then you’d hook up with possibly two people in four/five years. EVERYONE knows each other and/or has lived with each other. Seriously. I went to a huge school (45,000+ people) and it was rare to find someone who wasn’t associated with somebody I had already hooked up with… and I realize how slutty that sounds.

As far as clearing the air goes, he probably already knows and since he seems to be getting more comfortable with you, he’s probably already come to terms with the situation. There are no clear-cut rules in this situation and even if there were, you should break them. Who the hell cares about rules? It sounds like you’re really into this guy (and he seems to reciprocate the feelings), so just do what you want. The guilt (if you feel any) will fade away once you guys really start letting yourselves get involved. And, of course, if Jack feels slighted in any way, it’s nothing a 30-pack won’t fix. This is college, after all.

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